The Mechanics of Love (2021)

 

Kim Coleman and Jenny Hogarth

 

The Mechanics of Love is a split screen video in which the two artists record themselves separately as they rise and prepare for a video call with one-another, each filming themselves on multiple cameras as they move through a series of morning routines.   In the work, mobile video devices are employed for their ability to create intimate self portraits - an iPhone camera held in the hand when waking; a GoPro strapped to a chest whilst showering and dressing; a digital camera placed on a bath edge, bed, or bureau. A  landscape warped to centre the body. Virtuosity is not the goal -  mistakes, interruptions and imperfections are intrinsic.    

 

Although a stand-alone work, The Mechanics of Love ends where an older video by the artists begins. If You Can't See My Mirrors I Can't See You (2010) was made in the early days of Skype and used multiple cameras to record a video call about the making of the work. Using a video call as the basis of a work is pertinent in new ways today. They are used create rhythm, structure, and accountability. The two routines portrayed - although separate - intersect,  and seem to synchronise and speak to one another, allowing for chance encounters.  The video depicts life lived alongside and enabled by technology.  A world in which we bring others close to us - and us to them -  through multiple devices as if in a dream.  

(Video) the artists interviewed by Rachel Warriner about the work

 

Text by the artists about the making of the work in relation to their previous coauthored works

The Mechanics of Love was supported by LUX, Elephant Trust, Talbot Rice, and an AXIS web digital residency.